Thursday, June 14, 2012

Passionate undivided fidelities .








It's stopped raining. In the afternoon a posse of hardy cyclists venture through the village . No sooner here than they're gone . A meli-melange of red and blue lycra disappearing , laughing ,  into the distance .

The greengrocers wife sees me park the car. She raps her knuckles on the shops plate glass window to grab my attention  . '' M'Ongoose. We have potatoes from the Ile de Re ". All the other shoppers neglected as she explains that these potatoes are the best in the world. '' The soil is full of iodine " . The neglected shoppers nod and murmur in agreement. Another step towards educating this visitor from the north .

Oliver, the faithful old Labrador, is no more. For the last two years he's waited patiently by the doorstep for the return of his master. Last night a delivery van from Toulouse sped through the village. Driven too fast. Eighty, at least, in a thirty kilometre an hour zone. A young man in a hurry. A shortcut to the motorway. Oliver was sound asleep on the tarmac and didn't hear it coming. ' Just an old dog ' says the young man. The old  widow distraught. Angus helps dig a grave. A shaven headed, bib overalled group from the womens cooperative lower Oliver, wrapped in a sheet, into the ground. We're watched from over the fence by the cooperatives herd of bemused, leaf munching, alpacas. The undivided fidelities of a village dog. The peaceful , unchanging , routines of life in deepest France Profonde.

41 comments:

  1. Between dogs, a perfect time to take that bicycle out of the garage Angus? Lycra not compulsory.
    Cheers, Gail.

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  2. Oh no, not Oliver ! The guy who killed him is exactly the type of people in Franc,e who believe they just kill a dog, and one day, they kill people too !!! And don't stop !
    Oliver was the symbol of fidelity, and a such quiet boy. I will keep him in my mind forever.
    Amitiés à vous, Angus and Lady Font.

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  3. Oh poor Oliver, and his Mistress. Rest in peace, faithful boy. With your Master.
    x

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  4. What a sad ending to such a touching vigil. Poor Oliver :-(

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  5. I'm so saddened to read the news of Oliver this morning. In the pictures you posted of him, there always seemed to be a loneliness about him, that I know is no more--I know his loss is not just felt by the widow, but by people in your village as well. God speed Oliver...

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  6. Disposability of life...how sad. Not only for the widow and the village, but the young driver who feels life is this cheap...

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  7. That's so sad, poor faithful Oliver....

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

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  8. So sorry to hear of Oliver's passing....now his wait is no more, for he is reunited with his master.
    This total disregard for life (whether human or animal)by some folks happens right here on my island as well.
    My condolences to the widow....thankfully you were there to help her at that sad time.
    Virginia

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  9. So sorry to hear of Oliver's passing....now his wait is no more, for he is reunited with his master.
    This total disregard for life (whether human or animal)by some folks happens right here on my island as well.
    My condolences to the widow....thankfully you were there to help her at that sad time.
    Virginia

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  10. That is so very sad about Oliver. As for the young man who was in a hurry...... words fail us.

    Molly, Taffy, Monty and Winnie

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  11. Angus, digging three canine graves
    in the past six months or so is
    enough! Poor widow. She must have
    derived comfort from Oliver and his
    vigil every day.

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  12. Terrible to hear about dear old Oliver who we have known through your writings. Such a faithful fellow. His owner will be on my mind now.

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  13. Sad on so many levels. Oliver deserved more than this unfeeling death. Thankfully you were there to help the widow give him a decent burial.

    Joan and the Barkalots

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  14. are there truly some people who are simply uncaring and evil in their own way?
    darling oliver who never hurt anyone. who was simply patient and loving.
    to be put away by such a brash prideful idiot.
    sad to the extreme.
    what if he drives through those villages like that in the daytime... children playing...

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  15. That is truly sad about Oliver. Heartless van driving idiot! Just goes to show that today, more and more are becoming so nonchalant about everything, except themselves. Poor Oliver!

    Would love to hear if the tatties are exceptionally tasty with all that iodine in the earth. Interesting!

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  16. Kelly the hover dog, Wilfie & now Oliver... Please give the old widow condolences from Oliver's fans- his vigil is over- RIP Oliver

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  17. I hope the idiotic er..speeding van driver, is reprimanded by his employer. He not only killed a dog with his negligence, he put others' lives in danger. His disregard for life-even if it is just "an old dog" is deplorable. Poor widow-she must be devastated. Please give her words of comfort from us.

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  18. Teary eyed...TOO many faithful fellows leaving this earth lately. Seems our hearts ache every time for the one who is left to mourn the loss. And especially offended with such a careless and thoughtless attitude about "taking" the life of a creature.> oh even such small and seemingly unimportant incidents will be answered for, for it is the issue in the HEART that one must be accountable for. God is aware when a sparrow falls...will he not be even more aware when one is insensitive to such heartache caused? Your heart is good Angus...you are a wonderful neighbor. I send a fellow dog-lover's {hug} to you for all the comfort you give to these who are hurting in their loss. Blessings and sympathy to the dear little widow.

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  19. Tears again this morning for another sweet dog. He was in good health and had many years left to help the widow lady to have a reason to get up each day. What a sad day this is. In about four days it will be a month since the lost of our beloved Wilf, two dogs in a month time is two to many. Angus, thank you for helping the widow lady with her lost. I know you were very understanding how she was feeling at that moment of her great lost. Do you think she will get another dog? I hope she will.

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  20. This is so sad. Poor Oliver, his passing was nothing like Wilf's gentle and tender one, but I dearly hope it was quick for him, and that he is finally with his master now. You really are a wonderful neighbor, I am glad the elderly widow has you during these times because if anyone can and will join her in showing respect and understanding for the loss of 'just an old dog' it is you.

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  21. I hope Olivers master was there waiting for him....and I hope that you don't have to get that spade out again for a long while...xx

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  22. My heart breaks for the violence of his passing.
    But I know he is jubilant to be reunited with his master once more.
    Life is difficult down here sometimes.
    xo

    Could you tell the difference in the potatoes?

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  23. I an enraged! A loving companion lost to one who is not only an idiot as a driver but an idiot as a person as well. Morally bereft piece of rubbish masquerading as a human being! Is this what is happening here; moral famine in a time of plenty?

    Angus, you are a good man, through and through. God bless you.

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  24. Oh, not Oliver! :( I guess he won't have to wait for the old farmer to come home now, at least.

    So did you try the potatoes?

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  25. Arghh!!! Stupid people! I am so sick of driviers that are more concerned with the time they are making or the phone call/text message they are having. Poor Oliver. He did not deserve to go like this. My only comfortfort is knowing that he is reunited with his master once again. Thank you, Angus, for being the man you are and digging another hole for a beloved furry friend.

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  26. You're finally where you long to be. Rest in peace, sweet Oliver.

    "Just an old dog." That makes my blood boil!!!!!!

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  27. Oh how awful.
    It could just as easily have been a person stepping into the road at the wrong moment - a toddler perhaps.
    The guy should be charged with dangerous driving and locked up. A life is a life, even if it is "just an old dog".

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  28. That was Horrible for all of you. I'm so sorry. Poor faithful Oliver, what lessons he taught. "If only I can be half the person my dog thinks I am."

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  29. My only hope for Oliver is that death took him instantly. That he might have to spend hours in pain before death took him is too heartbreaking to contemplate. The driver should be locked up for a month or two.

    Jo
    http://theminnesotagirls.blogspot.com if you want to learn what a dog taught me.

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  30. In 50 years, someone will say...'just an old man' of the delivery driver. Hopefully, Oliver is playing with Wilfy,Digby, his master (and Zach too) on the other side of the bridge.

    Some people !!!

    Zach's mom !!!

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  31. Your so blessed to have a forever home and your city is really beautiful.

    Dog Shock Collar | Puppy Bond

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  32. No dog is "just a dog". Dogs are good. It's people who are lacking.

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  33. Oh faithful Oliver, your French version of Greyfriar's Bobby. I think the sadness and confusion he must have felt, waiting for a master who it must seem to him had abandoned him, must have been as painful as an injury. Those two soulmates are now rejoicing in the heavens. Just a dog, indeed.

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  34. Sweet Oliver :( No dog is "just a dog" to someone who has a heart.


    Blessings and Love,
    Janelle, Maggie Mae and Max

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  35. I am sorry, but I am FURIOUS!!!! "Just an old dog...."!!! What a heartless, irresponsible Cretin!!! Poor dear Oliver! I hope he never knew...and that the pain he felt was short-lived. I can't help weeping! That dear sweet devoted canine gave his best every single day! He deserved better. At least he was tenderly honored at his burial. Thank you Angus. Another ration of grief for the poor Widow....I am terribly sad.

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  36. I couldn't even comment when I first read this the other day, I was so angry. I agree with all the previous commenters that the driver is a heartless, soulless idiot, and I hope he will be treated with the same kind of cold disregard when he is old. What a despicable attitude. What sorrow for the old Widow. What kindness from you Angus, to help lay faithful Oliver to rest. Here's hoping that the end was mercifully quick, and that in a blink of an eye Oliver was across the Rainbow Bridge to meet with his old master.

    Sad in Calfornia,

    Purple Magpie and Mitzi the Dog

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  37. Oh, my. Thank goodness for you kind help to Oliver's widow mistress. Tragic...poor fellow, poor her, and what a callous awful person who ran him over. I agree with previous comments, hoping he is with his master at last.

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  38. "The undivided fidelities of a villiage dog" reminds me of our blogging community and the villiage we have around the dogs in one another's lives.

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